Combined hydrogen production and power generation from aluminumcombustion with water: analysis of the concept
Journal article, 2010
In this paper the combined production of hydrogen and power based on the aluminum combustion with water is
investigated. Furthermore, a concept system is proposed that is potentially able to provide pressurized hydrogen and high
temperature steam along with heat and work at the crankshaft. The system demonstrates high energy conversion
efficiency, as well as it fully complies with environment sustainability requirements.
The use of aluminum as an energy carrier or a fuel has been already studied in literature, but its application in the field of
the energy conversion systems is currently not well explored. Once aluminum oxide layer is removed, the pure aluminum
can react with water producing alumina and hydrogen while releasing a significant amount of heat that can be used to
produce superheated steam. Both pressurized hydrogen and superheated steam can be used in a turbine power system
developing electrical or mechanical power. Moreover, the hydrogen can be either stored for further usage or burned in
order to obtain a larger amount of heat for the process.
From an environmental viewpoint, an energy conversion utilizing the combustion of aluminum with water is very
interesting since the aluminum oxidation is completely GHG free and the high grade alumina produced by the reaction is
harmless and can be employed in other technological processes or recycled back to aluminum.
Finally, an embodiment of the concept system for the combined production of hydrogen and power based on the
aluminum combustion with water is proposed and its possible applications are discussed.